Urban Legends: Bloody Mary (2005, dir. Mary Lambert)

Students inadvertently conjure the spirit of a murdered alumnus: deaths ensue. DTV threequel taking a supernatural revenge rather than a whodunnit route. While thieving from multiple genre properties (including a kill lifted from Final Destination 2) there’s some agreeably gruesome moments, plus early appearances from Kate and Rooney Mara.

Here’s the trailer.

After Midnight [AKA Something Else] (2019, dir. Jeremy Gardner & Christian Stella)

Struggling with the breakup of a long-term relationship, a man is visited nightly by a monster. Smart romantic drama/horror hybrid, with lots going for it in a lo-fi indie kinda way. Makes you wonder what Gardner and Co will come up with next. Recommended.

Here’s the trailer.

Legacy of Lies (2020, dir. Adrian Bol)

A former MI6 agent’s past comes back to haunt him. OK DTV actioner from the reliable Scott Adkins, with decent fight choreography and some pizazz in the direction. Secrets and double-crosses as per, though there’s couple of interesting script wrinkles. No gamechanger, but fans will be happy.

Here’s the trailer.

3022 (2019, dir. John Suits)

A long-haul mission space station crew fractures when Earth is destroyed. Talky SF pic that wants to be both Solaris and Gravity but can’t settle, trying for both thriller and psychological study to variable effect. Some effective use of a decent cast and limited resources, but the scattershot scripting fluffs the ending, which is a shame.

Here’s the trailer.

Alien Parasite [AKA The Dustwalker] (2020, dir. Sandra Sciberras)

A remote Australian desert township is attacked by extraterrestrial parasitic organisms. SF/horror that has a pleasing Outback Western feel and which starts well, but soon descends into badly-scripted and underpowered wholescale genre theft. A shame, as there’s glimmers of a much better film here.

Here’s the trailer.

Transformers (2007, dir. Michael Bay)

A teenager finds he has crucial knowledge that might prevent an intergalactic war between battling robot armies. Spectacular – in the Debordian sense – SF comedy with excellent technical credits, but shot like the fever dream of a Sunny D-addled child. Excessive, and with a nasty after-taste. Four direct sequels followed.

Here’s the trailer.

Followed (2020, Dir. Antoine Le)

A YouTuber spends Halloween in a haunted hotel to boost his subscriber numbers. A good found footage premise that gradually falls into predictable handheld horror territory. The actors struggle with the dialogue and film logic, leaving it to meander into nonsense. Waste of an idea.

Host (2020, Dir. Rob Savage)

Six friends hold a seance via an online Zoom meeting during Covid lockdown and things go badly wrong. Hints of ‘Unfriended’ here, but a very well executed and jumpy film. Lots of great ideas and some familiar genre tropes, but also much to recommend. Well worth your time.

The Witches (2020, Dir. Robert Zemeckis)

New likeable version of Roald Dahl’s story. A change of setting and Anne Hathaway heading up a cast having a lot of fun. Some great moments, occasional poor VFX, but otherwise fun family territory. I prefer the 1990 version but this is still worth a watch!

The Taking of Deborah Logan (2014, Dir. Adam Robitel)

A film crew attempting to document an elderly Alzheimers patient encounter something far more sinister. Borrows from other genre films of this type, but has some effective moments and a couple of really good shocking twists – when they arrive. Worth a watch!